Nebulized formoterol provides added benefits to tiotropium treatment in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.Adv Ther. 2009 Nov; 26(11):1024-34.AT
The use of one or more long-acting bronchodilators is key in the maintenance therapy of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). This analysis pooled the results of two double-blind studies evaluating the efficacy and safety of adding nebulized formoterol fumarate inhalation solution (FFIS) to maintenance tiotropium (TIO) treatment.
Following a run-in period of 7-14 days with once-daily TIO 18 microg, COPD subjects (> or =25% to <65% predicted forced expiratory volume in 1 second [FEV(1)]) were randomized to twice-daily FFIS 20 microg (n=145) or nebulized placebo (PLA, n=140) while continuing on maintenance TIO for 6 weeks. Efficacy was measured using serial spirometry, transition dyspnea index (TDI), rescue albuterol use, and St. George's Respiratory Questionnaire (SGRQ).
The mean standardized area under the curve for FEV(1) over 3 hours (FEV(1)AUC(0-3)), the primary efficacy variable, was significantly higher in the FFIS/TIO group than the PLA/TIO group on day 1 (140 mL difference, P<0.0001) and week 6 (192 mL difference, P<0.0001). Mean TDI scores in the FFIS/TIO and PLA/TIO groups were 1.97 and 0.67, respectively (P=0.0001). Mean albuterol use declined in the FFIS/TIO group from 2.6 to 1.5 puffs/day compared with little change in the PLA/TIO group (P<0.0001). SGRQ scores were similar between treatment groups with the exception of the symptoms score, which improved in the FFIS/TIO group (-5.8) compared with PLA/TIO (-1.0), and more FFIS/TIO-treated subjects experienced a clinically significant improvement in total SGRQ score. More PLA/TIO-treated subjects than FFIS/TIO-treated subjects experienced adverse events (AEs) (45.7% vs. 31.0%) and COPD exacerbations (7.9% vs. 3.4%).
The addition of FFIS to maintenance TIO treatment for moderate to severe COPD results in significantly improved FEV(1) and dyspnea, decreased rescue medication use, and a lower incidence of AEs and COPD exacerbations. The addition of FFIS to TIO yields clinically and statistically significant benefits for COPD patients and might be of long-term benefit.